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U.S. Equity Markets and Environmental Policy. The Case of Electric Utility Investor Behavior During the Passage of the Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990

  • J. Diltz

    ()

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    We examine electric utilityinvestor reaction surrounding twenty-twomilestones associated with the passage of theClean Air Act Amendments of 1990. Resultssuggest that investors did not react sharply tothe passage of the Amendments. To the extentthat statistically significant effects wereobserved, we interpret the results as moreindicative of investor concern over resolutionof uncertainty surrounding the politicalprocess and resulting provisions than ofconcern over the expected costs of compliancefollowing passage of the Amendments. Weobserved little, if any, difference betweenutilities subject to Phase I restrictions andthose not subject to Phase I. Finally, changesin monthly excess returns appear to haveresulted from changes in U.S. interest ratesand investor concern over power industryderegulation. We view our results as importantbecause any wealth effects due to environmentalregulations represent a real economic costassociated with their implementation. In thissense, we view the results as “good news” forU.S. environmental policy makers. Copyright Kluwer Academic Publishers 2002

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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1023/A:1021351226459
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    Article provided by European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists in its journal Environmental and Resource Economics.

    Volume (Year): 23 (2002)
    Issue (Month): 4 (December)
    Pages: 379-401

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    Handle: RePEc:kap:enreec:v:23:y:2002:i:4:p:379-401
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